On the 60th anniversary of Joseph Stalin’s death, with Russian and international TV news bulletins showing old footage of his life and his funeral, Alexei Levinson looks at how his legacy still divides Russians today.
or spider web shawls have been knitted in Orenburg for
generations. The tradition nearly disappeared, but folk crafts are in the
ascendant again — there is money to be made from them, after all, says Elena
Last year two student sisters appearing on a Russian TV quiz show gained instant notoriety when asked to define the word ‘Holocaust’. A trip to Auschwitz with journalist Mumin Shakirov dispelled their ignorance, but, as he reflects, it was hardly surprising, given the subject is so rarely mentioned in Russia today.
Russian law banning US adoptions has been roundly criticised at home and
abroad; a toddler’s unexplained death has been held up as justification. For Daniil
Kotsyubinsky, it is all a case of history repeating: Russia’s past is full of
tragic cases where children have become innocent victims.
The forced resignation of Duma deputies accused of owning property they had not declared shows Vladimir Putin trying, in the same way as his illustrious forebear Josef Stalin, to purge the ranks. But you can’t set a thief to catch a thief, says Andrei Piontkovsky
Last week, Russians bid farewell to a man many considered to be the country’s greatest living filmmaker. Largely under-appreciated in the West, Alexei German’s films delighted in their complexity, tones, textured aesthetics, and the absence of simple heroes or villains. Ian Christie remembers him
China’s steadily growing economic expansion throughout the world is a cause of concern for many governments. Eastern Europe and Central Eurasia are no longer so dependent on Moscow and China is quietly rolling out credit lines and investments in the region. Time to sit up and pay attention, says Michael Cecire
Police custody, violence, trials and imprisonment have been all to common features on the Russian protest landscape since December 2011. A grassroots monitoring project called OVD-info has kept realtime data on the arrests; co-founder Grigory Okhotin shares their findings.
Many aging Russian
WWII veterans live in appalling conditions, and some die before they can cash a
government rehousing grant. By law, families should inherit the money, but some
regions deny them it. In Sergei Gogin’s native Ulyanovsk, authorities seem to
prefer spending the money on vanity projects abroad.
Pushkin House is hosting a retrospective of Russian director Marina
Goldovskaya’s documentaries under the heading ‘Russia since Perestroika'.
Masha Karp reflects on Goldovskaya’s distinctive art and the issues raised in her films.
Syria’s neighbours, including Turkey, have the most
to lose from an intensifying Syrian conflict, as they directly bear the brunt
of it. Thus it is imperative that there is some sort of dialogue across the
geopolitical divide. The EU is conspicuous in its absence.
Continuing oDRussia's debate on the future for Russian NGO funding, now a view from the coal face. Pavel Chikov is chair of one of the country's most respected NGOs: he argues that foundation grants remain the simplest way to let human rights activists get on with their work.
Writing on oDRussia yesterday, Almut Rochowanski argued that Kremlin’s repression of NGOs could work in their favour by encouraging domestic giving. Her mistake was assuming Russian NGOs are able and free to replicate Western membership-based fundraising models, which they are not, says Michael Allen.
Russian NGOs have traditionally looked abroad for their
funding, and are dismayed at recent legislation setting up new barriers to this
practice. Almut Rochowanski argues, however, that this should be seen as a
challenge to increase the involvement of the Russian public in the development
of civil society.
The annual Best of Russia photography exhibition has opened in Moscow’s Winzavod Centre for Contemporary Art. Reviewing the past five years of images, Jeremy Noble was struck by how explicitly the photographic eye reflects a country in the throes of radical change.
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